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E DITOR Trump fails to protect, defend the Constitution

To the editor: The words of President Trump, declaring himself “your president of law and order” and “an ally of all peaceful protestors” rang hollow when he was simultaneously ordering police to use rubber bullets, tear gas and flash bangs to disperse several hundred people conducting a peaceful protest in front of the White House. In the same speech, he said police should “dominate the streets” and threatened to “deploy the United States military and quickly solve the problem.”

It would be charitable to suggest the president simply has not read, or does not understand, the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States. It reads, in part, “Congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; of the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

President Trump apparently does not believe in this basic principle of democracy. His past glorification of dictators, his current threats to deploy “thousands and thousands of heavily armed soldiers, military personnel and law enforcement officers,” and his future plans for a massive 4th of July military parade down Pennsylvania Avenue, is a concern to all who believe in our constitution.

Trump emphasizes division and debasement, when the nation needs a plan to move forward with empathy and compassion. As he refers to protestors as terrorists, suggests Friday was a “good day” for recently murdered George Floyd, and draws on words from racist tirades of the past, one truth has become painfully clear: President Trump continues to divide rather than unite and is failing in his duties as president of this great nation.

Pete Hellios Granton

Defunding police is the Dems’ latest terrible idea

To the editor: I’m a conservative, not just politically, as that is how I roll in nearly every aspect of my life. I strive to “conserve” everything: resources, values, friendships, traditions, etc. On my farm, I fix what I can to avoid wasting money or spending money we don’t have.

This is why I can’t wrap my brain around the actions of Democrats. Instead of fixing our healthcare system, let’s trash it and replace it with an unworkable one — Obamacare. Instead of fixing our immigration system, let’s abolish ICE and thumb our noses at federal law with sanctuary cities. Instead of trying to win elections with integrity and on merit, let’s do elections by mail, with no voter ID, and eliminate the Electoral College. The latest awful idea is to defund police departments — instead of fixing the problems.

The majority of the cities with the biggest rallies and greatest looting and violence have been run by Democrats for 40 years or more. Who or what was stopping these Democrats from addressing police department problems all along?

Let’s take Minneapolis for example. A recent report showed complaints against police officers increased from 253 in 2015 to 398 in 2019. In only about 2 percent of those cases was disciplinary action taken. Going back eight years, five officers had 16 or more complaints against them, of which none were disciplined. City leaders could not see this problem in the making? Keeping people safe is the first duty of any government.

I hear talk blaming President Trump and that the answer is Joe Biden. Ironically, Joe Biden helped author 1994’s “Lock the S.O.B.’s Up” crime bill. Despite the flowery promises, race relations were worse after eight years of Obama/Biden. Then in 2017, President Trump came through with the First Step Act criminal justice reform bill. In addition, historic employment gains, notably for blacks, allowed us/them to weather the coronavirus better than we otherwise would have. Senile Joe Biden, who at times doesn’t even know where he is, is the answer?

Democrats stood idly by as riots started and were slow to rebuke those responsible. Some 700 federal, state, and local law enforcement officers sustained injuries. At least 15 people have died — many African Americans. Countless small businesses have been torched, vandalized, or looted — many owned or needed by African Americans. At least 150 federal buildings have been destroyed. How has this benefited anyone?

I think the reaction to George Floyd’s murder should have followed the wise doctor’s adage: “First, do no harm.” Instead of blaming Trump, local governors, mayors, and legislators should be held to account. We don’t need more police rules and laws as much as adherence to those already on the books and proper disciplinary action for officers out of compliance. Deadly force only as a last resort is a new concept? I think not!

As a conservative, I can’t see wasting anything, It’s beyond words to describe my feelings about the purposeful destruction and the Democrat fingerprints all over it. Biden staffers were party to bailing out recent riot criminals. Those on the left that are dreaming of a “police free future” should be careful what they wish for.

Randy Wokatsch Marathon City